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Peace Walker: The Legend of Hiawatha and Tekanawita (original 2004; edition 2004)

by C.J. Taylor

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Member:TundraBooks
Title:Peace Walker: The Legend of Hiawatha and Tekanawita
Authors:C.J. Taylor
Info:Tundra Books (2004), Hardcover, 48 pages
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Peace walker : the legend of Hiawatha and Tekanawita by C.J. Taylor (2004)

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I thought this was a compelling combination of myth and history. This legend of Hiawatha will inspire you to learn more about the Iroquois nation and their stories. It is a short chapter book meant for children age eight and over. I still enjoyed the reading the story. It is a great introduction to Hiawatha. I also really liked the artwork in this book. I think my two favorite pictures were of Chief Atotarho.

I like that Taylor included some history of the Iroquois confederacy. It is important for Americans to realize how the Iroquois inspired Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson and others forming the American government. I found the historical part of this book very interesting, but it is short. I will have to find some books to read more about the history.

If you like reading different myths and legends, I would recommend this book. Particularly if you are looking for some legends to read with a child. ( )
  BittyCornwell | Mar 24, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The first thing I noticed about C.J. Taylor's book Peace Walker was the breathtaking artwork. The dramatic, full-page paintings are very striking and complement the story well. With an intermingling of historical detail and traditional folklore, the text tells of the beginning of the Iroqois Confederacy, a united group of five (later six) Nations in what is now the New York state area. There is a clear contrast in the story between the brutal leadership of Chief Atotarho and the noble, long-suffering leadership of Chief Hiawatha. Atotarho suffers constant physical and emotional pain, but he suffers alone as his body and mind become more and more twisted. He resists peace, orders violent raids, and metes out cruel punishments. Like Atotarho. Hiawatha also endures great suffering, but in his suffering he seeks to bring comfort to others and, while he originally goes into the wilderness to suffer alone, he eventually finds healing and restoration through the help of another person, Tekanawita. Together, Hiawatha and Tekanawita, after long efforts (it takes "five cycles of seasons") bring peace and unity to the tribes who end up forming the Confederation and even bring peace to cruel Atotharo. I look forward to reading this book aloud and sharing Taylor's beautiful artwork with my children in the next year as we study Native Americans in our home school. I will caution that some parents/teachers may want to pre-read the text, as some of the language and imagery used to describe Atotahro could potentially be frightening for very young children. Also, while I found the information in the brief introduction and conclusion helpful, I would have liked even more information about the historical and geographical context for the events described in the story. ( )
  maryreiter | Mar 14, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Living two miles from the center of the Onondaga Nation I am somewhat familiar with the customs and stories of the Native Americans in central New York. This story describes the uniting of the five nations into the Iroquois confederacy to provide a united front against evil and for peace. Hiawatha overcomes incredible grief to bring peace to his people and those of the neighboring nations.
It is a fantastic book to read aloud, and I would choose it for elementary children. The author's voice is authentic and the descriptions of the area a wonderful lesson in geography and history for central New York students. Not only did our founding fathers pattern our government after the Iroqouis, but the early suffrage movement did so as well. Onondaga women worked with Matilda Gage in advocating for women's rights being a model of strong female leadership. ( )
  book58lover | Mar 13, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The story woven by C.J. Taylor relays many aspects of the common Iroquois traditional myths about Hiawatha, Deganawida (here called Tekanawita), and Tadadaho (here Chief Atotarho), although it ignores my favorite version wherein the women of the five tribes unite and refuse to have sex with their men (a native Lysistrata) until they agree to stop fighting, which is probably not considered appropriate for children.

Taylor has created a great storybook for older children, probably in the 12-14 year old range, since there are few pictures, and lots of text. The text is not difficult to read, and the pictures help illustrate what the men might have looked like.

Adding materials to the back of the book to encourage teachers to use the book in their classes could help introduce this important story to more people in America, most of whom are only familiar with the derogatory poem, "Little Hiawatha."

Overall, a worthwhile story to share. ( )
  hefruth | Mar 9, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
It takes a moment for the reader to find his or her footing in this book, as it begins with a historical introduction and seems to shape-shift gradually into a more legendary account. But that is all the more reason this book should be appreciated, for it wears both badges openly as opposed to trying to sell the belief that any "strict" history can be completely unbiased. All history and biography is filtered through the perspective of its teller, and "Peace Walker" presents a distinctly Native American account of the story, both in its attitude towards the subjects and in its artistic presence. The vocabulary and description are lush and vivid, complemented by lavish illustrations heavy with symbolism. The book is deceptively thin, so you might expect it to be geared towards a younger audience, but in language it is appropriate either for more advanced elementary readers or for middle schoolers. Either way, this is a kind of approach to biography and history that American children deserve to see more of. ( )
  quaintlittlehead | Mar 8, 2014 |
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Book description
A retelling for young readers of the Iroquois legend of Hiawatha and the establishment of the Great Peace among the Five Nations: the Mohawk, Onondaga, Seneca, Oneida, and Cayuga Indians.
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Recounts the tale of Hiawatha's bravery in bringing peace and unity to the Iroquois nations.

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Tundra Books

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